Each of a series of Soviet artificial satellites, the first of which (launched on October 4, 1957) was the first satellite to be placed in orbit.
- Ever since the Soviets launched sputnik in 1957, satellites have been part of our consciousness.
- The first sputnik and Yuriy Gagarin's flight on April 12, 1961 made this country a great space power.
- In Russian, the word sputnik means a travelling companion.
Russian, literally 'fellow-traveler'.
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